Mountain Bike the Grand Canyon’s Rainbow Rim and Arizona Trail
Mountain bike some of Arizona’s most remote and picturesque singletrack on a 4-day guided mountain bike trip. Bike the Rainbow Rim Trail on Grand Canyon’s North Rim and a forested high-altitude section of the epic Arizona Trail. The Rainbow Rim Trail offers stunning views of the Grand Canyon and is the only piece of singletrack trail on the rim of the Grand Canyon that is open to bikes. You’ll be amazed not only by the views of the canyon itself but also by the lush and forested backcountry of the Kaibab National Forest. Explore this stunning alpine wilderness on two wheels while riding the length of the Rainbow Rim trail and portions of the Arizona Trail. Expert local guides ride with you every mile of trial and offer all the essential comforts of home in a comfortable basecamp setting.
Why travel with AOA? – Find out more
Trip Price: $1195 pp
+Permits & Land Fees: $12 pp*
*Subject to change and will be based on actual costs at time of departure.
4 days, 3 nights
Difficulty: Moderate to Advanced
Activity: Mountain Biking, Camping
Grand Canyon and Arizona Trail Mountain Bike Trip
Price & Inclusions
TRIP PRICE- $1195 PP
+Permits & Land Use Fees: $12 pp*
- Price is per person.
- Book a 2018 trip online and use the code NIFTY50 for $50 off per person.
*Subject to change and will be based on actual costs at time of departure
Trip Price Includes
- All transfers during trip
- 3 nights camping with comfortable basecamp amenities
- Basecamp Group Gear (personal mess kit, kitchen equipment, hand washing station, dish washing station, solar shower, camp chairs, etc.)
- Meals starting lunch Day 1 through lunch Day 4
- Water and snacks
- Rider support/aid stations during rides
- Rider cue sheets, GPX files in advance (upon request)
- Professional Wilderness First Responder certified guide/mechanic
Permit & Land Use Fees Include
- Grand Canyon National Park entry and permits
- Grand Canyon National Park commercial land use fee
- Personal insurance and expenses
- Transportation to and from Phoenix/Scottsdale
- Pre- and post-trip lodging
- Breakfast Day 1, dinner Day 4
- Alcohol and related gratuities
- Bike and helmet (available to rent from AOA)
- Bike shipping/building/packing
- Personal cycling kit and clothing
- Tent (available to rent from AOA)*
- Sleeping pad (available to rent from AOA)*
- Sleeping bag (available to rent from AOA)*
- Gratuities to AOA Guides
*Please see the “Rentals & Add Ons” tab below for a list of available bike and gear rentals and purchase options.
Trip Rating (1 – 5)
Fitness – 3.5
Comfort – 2.5
Solitude – 4
Guest Participation – 4
Click here for an explanation of AOA’s trip ratings.
Where to Meet
START: 6:00am – 12:00pm on Day 1. Meet your guide in the lobby of the Holiday Inn Express in Old Town Scottsdale (CLICK HERE for map) at 6:00am, Flagstaff Pullman Airport at 8:30am, or Jacob Lake Inn at 12:00pm.
END: Afternoon on Day 4. Drop-off at Jacob Lake Inn at 12:00 – 2:00pm, Flagstaff Pullman Airport at 3:30 – 5:30pm, or the Holiday Inn Express in Old Town Scottsdale between 6:00 – 8:00pm.
GUESTS: 2 min to 12 max
MINIMUM AGE: 14
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When’s the best time to go on this trip?
A: The North Rim of the Grand Canyon makes a great summer mountain biking destination for escaping the heat due to its high elevation. Expect cool nights during early and late summer departures and more mild temperatures during mid-summer departures. Historically, August presents the greatest possibility for rain with other summer months being relatively dry.
Q: What are the rides like and how do I train for the trip?
A: This tour is 100% mountain biking and meant for intermediate cyclists looking to spend a few hours in the saddle each day. To fully enjoy this trip, we recommend building up to riding 10-20 miles of trail each day for 4 days with moderate elevation change. The Grand Canyon North Rim sits at over 8,000 feet above sea level which can challenge even experienced athletes – the more cardiovascular fitness you have in this regard, the better off you will be. You can expect a majority of single track with a few sections of rocky trail as well as a few parts along dirt roads on the Arizona Trail. After booking your cycling trip with AOA, you will receive a trip planner with more specific instruction for preparation.
Q: What sort of accommodations are included on this trip?
A: Our carefully selected campground locations are the perfect backdrop for your adventure story to unfold while mountain biking pristine singletrack with your fellow riders. The AOA kitchen is fully equipped to allow our guides to prepare healthy, fresh meals. Guests will be provided with all dishware and utensils needed for meals. Showers will be available to guests each day.
Spacious tents, comfortable sleeping pads, and appropriately rated sleeping bags are available to rent from AOA if needed or preferred.
Rentals & Add Ons
- 30 to 40 liter day pack ($25 per)
- Sleeping bag and linen set rental ($35 per bag/set)
- Inflatable sleeping pad ($35 per, sleeping pads add insulation and are required on AOA trips)
- 4-Person Basecamping Tent ($55 per tent)
- Bike rental is available through AOA. See the “Bike Rentals” tab below.
A bike and helmet are not included with the cost of this trip.
- Bike building/packing/tuning ($125) when you ship to AOA – Find out more
- Purchase: 3-liter Camelbak reservoir/bladder ($35 per)
Optional upgrades, additions, and rentals subject to tax (7.95%)
- June 14-17
- June 28- July 1
- July 5-8
- July 19-22
- August 2-5
- August 16-19
- August 30- September 2
- September 13-16
- September 27-30
- October 4-7
- October 11-14
To see all multi-day guided tours, visit our Adventure Tour Calendar.
Bike Rental Options
This trip does not include a rental bike. AOA offers rental mountain bikes in various performance levels. Each bike rental includes a helmet and flat repair kit. You are welcome to bring your own pedals and saddle to use with our rental bikes.
Reservation & Cancellation Policy
Reservations, Payments and Cancellation
AOA’s cycling tours are very popular and advanced planning is often necessary. We recommend making your reservations at least 3 to 5 months in advance. We can accommodate last-minute bookings provided space is available, so please call our office to check. Each trip requires a minimum number of participants for departure. Arizona Outback Adventures (AOA) reserves the right to cancel scheduled trips that do not meet minimum sign-up requirements.
We strongly recommend that you purchase “travel insurance.” This is a valuable tool that will protect your trip investment.
For more details please see our comprehensive Trip Policies and Payments page.
We recommend Travel Guard insurance.
Experience the only singletrack trail in the Grand Canyon open to bikes! Camp in a plush basecamp set up AOA style by our professional guides. Each trip is lead by an experienced guide providing mechanical and nutritional support. Whether you opt to bring your own bike or rent a bike to match your skill from AOA, you’ll enjoy miles of remote trails along the Grand Canyon’s little-visited North Rim. In addition to exploring these pristine backcountry areas, we’ll also visit the North Rim Visitor Center and experience incredible views of the Canyon that a majority of the park’s visitors never experience.
A sizable portion of this trip is spent at altitudes of 8,000 feet above sea level or higher. Some individuals may find it more challenging to ride at these elevations, however, a strong cardiovascular fitness base can help make this adventure more enjoyable.
DAY 1: SCOTTSDALE TO GRAND CANYON NORTH RIM
Today we shuttle from Scottsdale/Phoenix to the Grand Canyon North Rim with some interesting stops along the way including the famous Cameron Indian Trading Post. Established in 1916, this trading post is an important showplace for fine Native American and Southwestern art. For us it is the perfect lunch spot. Continuing onwards, we will reach Navajo Bridge. This scenic span is just downstream from “Lee’s Ferry,” the launch point for rafting trips down the Grand Canyon’s mighty Colorado River. Finally, we will stretch our legs, dial in our bikes, and ride approximately 10-11 miles right into camp. Day’s end will find us enjoying our first night’s dinner in the remote backcountry of the Kaibab National Forest.
- Cycling: 11 Miles
- Meals: Breakfast on own, lunch and dinner included
- Lodging: AOA Basecamp
DAY 2: RAINBOW RIM TRAIL
Wake up to the crisp, fresh air of the Grand Canyon. After a guide-prepared breakfast to fuel our day, we’ll mount up and take on the Rainbow Rim trail. As we flow along the north rim of the Grand Canyon, we’ll make our way in and around tributary side canyons, connecting between five main overlooks. Each of these promontories gives us the chance to peer into one of the seven wonders of the world. The winding curves, occasional climb, and high elevation riding are sure to challenge you. After plenty of miles in the dirt, we’ll relax and unwind to the slower-paced life in the backcountry. With no shortage of sights to see and trails to ride tomorrow, sleep fast tonight to the quietness of the North Rim.
- Cycling: 30 miles
- Meals: All meals included
- Lodging: AOA Basecamp
DAY 3: EAST RIM AND THE ARIZONA TRAIL
The smell of coffee, tea, and breakfast is sure to lure you out of your tent after a cozy night under the stars. We’ll pack up camp and head for the North Rim Visitor Center. After a quality shower at a more established facility, we’ll take in one of the most incredible vistas on the North Rim, a favorite of ours for many reasons, most park visitors never see this view! After a picnic lunch we transfer to the East Rim where we begin the day’s ride along the Arizona Trail. The Arizona Trail traverses the entire state of Arizona from Mexico to Utah and is approximately 800 miles long. Our ride today is one direction and has a net elevation loss. It leads us right into our new camp location for one final night together.
- Cycling: 18 miles
- Meals: All meals included
- Lodging: AOA Basecamp
DAY 4: ARIZONA TRAIL TO JACOB LAKE
Our final day has us riding the remaining section of the Arizona Trail to Jacob Lake. This fun and flowy descent provides the perfect conclusion to our trip as we make our way out of the backcountry. Enjoy the cool breeze through the pines as you spin along to our end of the trail. Time permitting, we will stop in the Jacob Lake general store and pick up some of the world’s best cookies! Today, our trip will return to the Scottsdale and Phoenix area between 6:00-8:00pm.
- Cycling: 14
- Meals: Breakfast and lunch included
- Lodging: On your own tonight
CHECK OUT THIS TRIP’S ROUTE
Click here to see the routes we ride on this guided cycling trip.
Tips for Planning a Mountain Biking trip
Before you rent or ride a bike, you might want to know what size you are. Here’s a blog on finding out your best bike fit.